DoBaaraa Review: Taapsee Pannu and Anurag Kashyap’s film is a tiring brain exercise

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Film: DoBaaraa

Cast: Taapsee Pannu, Pavail Gulati, Saswata Chatterjee, Himanshi Choudhry, Vidusshi Mehra, Arrian Sawant and others

Director: Anurag Kashyap

Rating: 2.5 Moons

Before I can start discussing DoBaaraa, it is important to wrap my head around what happened in those 2 hours and 12 minutes of movie-watching. Sure, it isn’t your regular Anurag Kashyap film or a hard-hitting story narrated through the acting prowess of Taapsee Pannu. But what exactly is it? A time travel film or a horror-supernatural thriller? A social drama or desi Bollywood entertainer? Well, DoBaaraa refuses to fit itself in any of these brackets. 

DoBaaraa travels a multiverse of two timelines. The film takes us 26 years back in time to 1996 when Anay (Arrian Sawant) is living with his mother on the outskirts of Pune. Due to a Geomagnetic storm, Anay is forced to stay at home. On one stormy night, fascinated with a video recorder, he tries to record himself in the camera. However, he is disturbed by constant noises in his neighbours’ house. In order to find out the reason behind the racket, Anay goes to the house to find Mrs. Ghosh, the wife of Raja Ghosh, dead. While trying to escape, Anay is accidentally hit by a van on the road. 

The time of his death is 2.12 am at night. In 2021, Anay’s property is now occupied by the Awasthis. Vinay Awasthi (Rahul Bhat and his oh-so-striking resemblance with Álvaro Morte) moves in with his wife Antara (Taapsee Pannu) and daughter Avanti. Antara senses a major gap in her marital life with Vinay. As she explores the property, she discovers the television used by Anay and is intrigued. After learning about Anay’s death, Antara makes the television her newfound fascination.

One night, she finds the ‘portal’ to establish a connection with Anay in the parallel universe. In a quest to change time and undo fatal events, Antara’s life has to face a storm unlike any other seen by her or the world around her. If you’re wondering why the entire plotline is revealed here, then relax. There’s a lot more to DoBaaraa than mentioned above.  

DoBaaraa is Spanish film Mirage’s Spanish remake. The film, directed by Anurag, is undoubtedly unpredictable, only if you haven’t watched Mirage. Having said that, DoBaaraa isn’t completely free of grey areas which are loaded with confusing twists. In an attempt to create bump-free time travel, Anurag’s film suffers majorly because of the unsatisfactory execution. As mentioned above, the second half leads to an unforeseen reveal but the build-up isn’t always easy to understand. A lot is happening throughout the film and it will certainly leave you wondering whether one should call it a murder mystery or a relationship drama. DoBaaraa can certainly be called a brain exercise that will leave you tired and to some extent, disinterested. 

Anurag’s time travel tale is saved by Taapsee’s performance. It is her conviction as Antara that keeps the boat afloat. She makes it her own film as the climax inches closer and fans will find themselves clapping and cheering for her as they always do in the kinds of films she headlines. Pavail Gulati is an interesting actor but in DoBaaraa, he could have bettered himself in emotional scenes. Saswata Chatterjee, in a parallel role, excels. Himanshi Choudhry is good in a limited role. Arrian Sawant as Anay is likeable, especially when he outshines most adults in the film with his innocence. 

DoBaaraa needs to be watched dobara to understand what we unintentionally miss out on as a lot happens in those 2 hours 12 minutes. But, we are not quite sure whether you will savour the product as expected by Anurag, Taapsee and the makers. 

PeepingMoon.com gives DoBaaraa 2.5 Moons

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